tutorial title
An example of what we are making

Take any photo or image and create a great looking self frame With the center of the image highlighted. This technique works best with horizontally oriented images. Click on the example above to see it full sized.
This tutorial was inspired by Birgit's Framed Apples and because of the similarities was rewritten with her permission.

What you will need:

PhotoImpact Version 7 or higher
Screen shots were done in PI X3
a photo or image of your own, or download mine One  Two  Three  Four  
This tutorial was written for inclusion in the Beginner's Workshop for PhotoImpact

NOTE If you are using PI 10 or higher please be sure you are not working in Standard or Basic mode. You need to be in Advanced Mode or Full Edit to have all the functionality of the program available for this tutorial.

Let's begin

  1. Open the photo or image you are using. There are four images linked above. You are welcome to use one of them.
  • Press Ctrl+D to duplicate your image. Now close the original to keep it safe and unchanged.
  • Size is important for this to work, so resize to 600 pixels on it's longest side.
  • Press Ctrl+D two more times.  You now have three copies of this images.  Minimize two of them.

  1. Go to Adjust/Expand Canvas and use the following settings.
  • Check the box that says Expand Sides Equally
  • enter 5 in any of the boxes (top, right, etc) it will be copied to all the boxes.
  • Right click in the color box and choose a nice dark color from your image. I chose a nice maroon from the roof in my example.
  • click OK
  1. Now grab your Magic Wand Selection tool and click anywhere in that 5 pixel border you just added. Right click and choose Convert to object.
    Do Not Deselect the border.
  1. Open your Easy Palette and go to Special Effects/Fills and Textures in the Image Enhancements Gallery.
  • Find Embossed 7 and double click to apply it to your border.
  • This is the bottom image. Minimize this one, and restore one of the other two copies.
  1. Go to Edit/Fill and use the setting below.
  • Color = White
  • Merge = Always
  • Transparency = 50
  • Click OK
  1. Now we will resize this image, add a small border and apply the Embossed 7 preset.
  • Go to Adjust/Expand Canvas. Use the same settings and color as in Step 2.
  • Now Go to your Easy Palette and apply the Embossed 7 preset to the entire image.
  • Go to Adjust/Resize and enter 500 for the width. Be sure not to uncheck Keep Aspect Ratio. This will downsize your image without distorting it.

What you should have now is a smaller, lightened version of the original with a dark frame and embossing texture over all.
  1. We need to place this smaller image on the larger one with the border.
  • Copy the smaller image. Right click/Copy
  • Restore the larger bordered image.
  • Paste your copied image into the larger one
  • Right Click and choose ALIGN/Align Both.
  • Minimize the smaller image.

    You should now have the smaller image pasted into and centered over the Larger bordered image.
  1. Restore the third image. This is the one you haven't done anything to, but resize.

    Right click and copy.

    Go back to your framed image. We are going to use the Path tool to draw another smaller frame on top of this one.
  1. Activate your Path Outline Tool and set up as follows.
  • Shape = Rectangle
  • Color = any or you can use the dark color of your outer frame.
  • 2d Object
  • Width - 9
  • Leave Shadow unchecked

  1. Now drag your mouse across your inner frame to draw out a rectangle that will fit inside it.
  1. Right click the rectangle and convert object from Path to Image.
    Right Click again and Align center both.

    Now you have a triple framed image. But we aren't done with this last frame so don't deselect it yet. If you like your choice of the dark color for it skip the next step.
  1. Go to Edit/Fill and choose the Image Tab. Set up as follows.
  • Click Clipboard
  • Choose Fit the Image
  • Transparency = 0
  • Merge = Always
  1. Go to WEB/Button Designer/Any Shape and set up as follows.
  • Click on the Bevel Tab set Bevel Size and Smoothness to 2
  • Choose second bevel type as shown in my screen shot
  • Click Ok to apply
  1. You now have a final frame that has a small bevel giving it a pillowy or puffed up effect. Now Right click anywhere and choose Merge All.
  1. Go back to your plain resized image again.
    Grab your Standard Selection Tool and set up as follows.
  • Shape = Oval or Ellipse
  • Soft Edge = 35
  • Fixed must not be checked.
  • Now draw out an ellipse across the approximate center of your image. You can use the arrow keys on your Keyboard to move the selection around until you have it where you want it.
  1. Right Click the selection and Convert to Object.
    Now you can drag this around. You will notice that there's a nice soft edge around it and it leaves a white hole in the image. That's fine.
  1. Drag your ellipse object from where you cut it out over to the multi-framed image from the last step.
    You might be tempted here to use the Align tool again to center the image. But it will look better if you do this yourself. Position it so that any horizontal lines line up so that it looks stacked.
  1. Apply your watermark, if you have one, and then Optimize and save as Jpeg and show off your newly framed image.

Copyright © Merlene Guldager

     This document and the images contained therein may not be translated, duplicated, redistributed or otherwise appropriated.